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Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.

Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Caring, understanding, using wisely, Australia's oceans policy vol 1

Commonwealth of Australia 1998
ISBN 0 642 54592 8

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Executive summary

Australia's Oceans Policy sets in place the framework for integrated and ecosystem-based planning and management for all of Australia's marine jurisdictions. It includes a vision, a series of goals and principles and policy guidance for a national Oceans Policy. Building on existing effective sectoral and jurisdictional mechanisms, it promotes ecologically sustainable development of the resources of our oceans and the encouragement of internationally competitive marine industries, while ensuring the protection of marine biological diversity.At the core of the Oceans Policy is the development of Regional Marine Plans, based on large marine ecosystems, which will be binding on all Commonwealth agencies. The first Regional Marine Plan will be developed for the south-eastern region of Australia's Exclusive Economic Zone. Broadly, this will include waters off Victoria, Tasmania, southern New South Wales and eastern South Australia.Australia's Marine Jurisdictional Zones

Australia's Oceans Policy establishes a series of arrangements for implementation, including :

State and Territory governments will be encouraged to participate in the development of Regional Marine Plans and on the Steering Committees. Commonwealth- State coordination on oceans policy matters in general is proposed to take place through the Australian and New Zealand Environment and Conservation Council.

Australia's Oceans Policy - Specific Sectoral Measures details the major challenges and the proposed responses in some twenty areas of oceans planning and management. These range from the conservation of marine biological diversity, shipping, marine pollution, fisheries and indigenous interests, to understanding the oceans and protection of the national interest. An important component is the progressive assessment of the effectiveness of the Oceans Policy and its implementation.

The Government has committed $50 million over three years for implementation of the Policy. Specific actions on which commitments have been made include:

State and Territory Governments will be invited to endorse Australia's Oceans Policy as an agreed national approach, and will play an important part in ensuring its effective implementation.